Asia News Network August 6, 2013 1:00 am
A development project on a proposed reclamation site in Manila Bay is expected to provide up to 600,000 jobs that would help ease unemployment in the country, particularly in Metro Manila.
Up to 100,000 jobs would be generated during the construction phase of the project and up to 500,000 jobs once it becomes operational, the Manila Gold Coast Development Corp (MGCDC), owned by the family of businessman William Tieng, said in a statement.
The project, envisioned to become a world-class commercial, residential and tourism centre 600 metres into Manila Bay, has been touted by the MGCDC to be a rich revenue source.
The MGCDC said the project would generate up to 17 billion pesos (Bt12.2 billion) in taxes every year on top of 10 billion pesos in real estate taxes for the local government of Manila, which has jurisdiction over the reclamation site.
The project reportedly has the support of the Manila City government. The statement quoted Mayor Joseph Estrada as saying that the project, called Manila Solar City, would be crucial to reversing the deterioration of the city.
“Right now, studies show that Manila has the most jobless people. A hungry stomach knows no law. Through this we can provide employment and [thus] eliminate criminal activity,” Estrada said.
Manila Solar City, however, like most reclamation projects in the country, is being opposed because it could cause more flooding in Metro Manila.
But the Court of Appeals, in a case involving another Manila Bay reclamation project south of the Manila Solar City site, said it found no evidence to support claims that reclamation projects worsened flooding.
“These apprehensions have been disproved by objective, expert and scientific studies of reputable entities with vast international experience,” said a recent decision by the court’s Third Division.